Q4 2020 Product Update

We continued to make progress in Q4:

  • Online Payments are now live!
  • While not complete, significant work has been done in forecasting to improve performance and release is expected before the end of January.  
  • We’ve also taken steps to improve and streamline the industrial codes conversion process that will be needed by many of the smaller communities in South Carolina this year.

I’m excited about the sales strategy we’ll be testing this quarter and the possibility of the currently opportunities coming to closure as well.  If everything hits we’ll have to act fast to keep from being overwhelmed, but that’s a problem I wouldn’t mind having.  If they don’t hit, then the sales and marketing strategy will tell us a lot as well.

Workflow

We made very good progress in workflow including a significant refactoring due to some usability issues once we started to try and attach it to a license.  The workflow will track serial and branching paths.  In November we started working on the rendering of the workflow. At that point we made the decision to pause development on workflow and instead focus on the forecasting and online payments and plan to pick it back up later in Q1.

Business License

Industrial Conversion

We did a lot of work in Q4 refining the industrial conversion process so we can cleanly start with a new install of the system and load up the requirements.  We discovered that many of our conversions were based on an older version of NAICS so we had to do some cleanup and auditing of our conversion tables.   

Forecasting

Also, during this quarter, MASC posted a new conversion table from the industrial codes to the table.  Along with the change of the industrial codes above, we had to modify and audit our import scripts to match the new conversion.

Once we loaded all the rules changing the class of license that a business would get  and setting up different rates for those license classes, we discovered that even for 100 records, rendering was taking 2 minutes to perform the forecast and another 2 minutes to render.  We now have rendering time down to a few seconds, regardless of the dataset size, and the forecasting itself down to 14 seconds for 100 records.  While much better, it’s still slow so we also added progress updates to the user interface for the time being while we look to circle back on that in the future. 

Online Payments

Online payments are now live and active!  We successfully implemented a minimal duplication methodology where almost no data is stored on the public facing system, which reduces the chance of data being lost in a security event. 

Other

We’ve also made some progress on interface improvements.  Starting in December, we started setting aside Friday afternoons with the goal of posting a patch to address bugs weekly. 

  • Added CSV Export capabilities to reports
  • Added filtering controls to reports
  • Improved address management
  • Bad checks reconciliation process
  • Shortcode-searches to speed user lookups
  • Interface improvements and bug fixes
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